Throughout today’s reading you will encounter a recurring theme – the interconnectedness of sex and marriage and God’s determination to maintain the holiness of both that they may be both a gift to God’s people and a testimony of God’s love and holiness to the neighboring peoples.
As you read through this text, note the wisdom of the provision of these laws. Also note how different our culture would be if they were followed. It is not hard to imagine the reaction many our culture would have towards laws that condemn cross-dressing, gender confusion, marital infidelity with the death penalty. In contrast, our culture has not only failed to condemn such behavior, but we are increasingly celebrating it.
How should we as Christians respond to these chapters in our present culture? First, understand that these verses do not condone violence or hatred toward those who are deceived and caught up in an extramarital heterosexual relationship or a Gay, Lesbian, or Transgender lifestyle. As we have previously discovered, the laws pertain to a unique period in God’s plan of salvation when God’s people are a nation with a government, not a church made of many nations. Second, we must understand that these laws do point to a real and universal truth that extramarital heterosexual relationships, and Gay, Lesbian, and Transgender lifestyles are universally in opposition to God’s holiness and His design for human sexuality, flourishing and marriage. Finally, the way we should respond to our culture’s distortion of God’s gift of sexuality and marriage is to strive to glorify God with our sexuality and marriage so that others may see a better picture of God’s design and give Him glory. If you are married, is God glorified in the love you show your spouse and your sexual relationship? If you are single, is God glorified in your sexual purity? If you struggle with same-sex attractions or gender-confusion, is God glorified by your exaltation of His holiness and will above the sinful desires of your flesh? If you have failed in any of these areas, are you ready to seek His forgiveness and follow His will for your life even if it means setting aside a significant part of your life?